A loud grinding sound means the brake linings are worn down and the metal backing plates are grinding on the rotors. You're past due to have the brake pads replaced. The rotors will also need to be machined as part of a normal brake job, but if they're ground too far that they will end up being under the published legal limit they will have to be replaced. A lot of shops automatically just replace them because they have come down so much in price that it's less expensive than what the labor costs to machine the old ones. Any repair shop can perform a brake inspection and tell you what is needed.
As for the feel of the brake pedal, that is a separate issue from the brake pad wear. If it is hard to push down, goes down too far or too easily, those things are related to the brake fluid and brake hydraulic system. Those things will also be checked during the brake system inspection. If you have an intermittent problem that you don't hear, feel, or notice all the time, be sure to mention that when you ask for the brake inspection, otherwise the mechanic won't know to try to make that act up so he can evaluate the system's performance.
Saturday, July 27th, 2013 AT 11:06 PM